Ronald Koeman faced the press before the big clash on Wednesday night in the League against Real Sociedad at the Camp Nou.
The Barcelona boss offered updates on the fitnress of Ousmane Dembele and Ansu Fati, spoke about the lack of time of the Riqui Puig game and, of course, about Wednesday’s opponents.
Here are the best bits:
Koeman on Real Sociedad
I’m a good team. You realize they’ve been playing together for a few years. I like the way they play. I am aware that we will have to play well, with confidence and possession to cause them problems. I think it will be an open match, last year it was open. Both teams want to have the ball and press, so I expect a nice and open game.
Koeman in a team spirit
I haven’t been with them for a long time, but I see a good atmosphere in the dressing room and in training, I don’t see a problem between them. Yesterday they had a party at Ciutat Esportiva after training before Christmas, and the atmosphere is good, there was a lot of noise.
Koeman on Riqui Puig
There is always a certain interest from the press, because he is a house player and does not play much. But we are not talking about the fact that a single player does not receive minutes, there are many. We are a strong team and only 11 can play, based on training and attitude.
Koeman on Frenkie de Jong
He has always been a player with responsibility for the accumulated game, but he has other qualities to be more attacking, because he is very fast with the ball and can break the lines with the ball. We’re working on this with him. We want it to be more important in the last third.
Koeman on Ousmane Dembele
Ousmane trains individually. He is not part of the group yet and I will not give a return date. Hopefully soon, because he’s a player we need.
Koeman on Pjanic
I talked last week about what needs to be improved, I like his attitude, it wouldn’t be good if he was happy. Let him be unhappy and work hard to get play opportunities.
Koeman on Ansu Fati
With these types of injuries, it is difficult to know when you can return. He works hard every day at the club’s facilities to improve, but it depends on how he progresses. We can not take any risk, especially because of his age, he has a long time.
Koeman on Mingueza
At this moment he is a player from the first team, he trains with us, he had problems with injuries, but he offers competition for the central defenders. He is a young player with a future in this team.
Koeman on Messi who matches Pele’s record
These are impressive numbers, we will not find another player to give so much to this club, that is why he is number 1. Once again, everything he has done for this club is incredible.